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Amazon Prime rumored for Indian launch later this year
India is becoming an increasingly important market for gadget manufacturers and retailers, and Amazon apparently wants a bigger slice of the pie. The e-commerce giant is preparing to invest $5 billion into the country in a bid to rival local retailers such as Flipkart and Snapdeal, according to two sources familiar with the matter.
As part of its India expansion, Amazon is apparently planning to launch its music, instant video and Amazon Prime subscription delivery service in the country later this year.
In order to bundle an impressive line-up of music and video content for its regional Prime service, Amazon has already apparently begun talks with music labels and content producers. Amazon appointed former Sony Entertainment executive Nitesh Kripalani to spearhead this initiative late last year.
“Overall, the bet on India will pay off well for Amazon it’s a high-volume, low-margin business in the US; Amazon India will be similar. I don’t expect high profits from India but definitely good scale” – Kartik Hosanagar, professor at The Wharton School
The Indian retail market has become increasingly competitive over the past few years and Amazon’s rivals have also been raising funds for further investments. Flipkart recently generated around $3 billion following several rounds of funding, and Snapdeal raised nearly $1 billion since 2011. Amazon itself raised $2 billion in India last year.
Amazon is already one of the most popular e-commerce websites in India after just a couple of years operating within the country, but it isn’t the most profitable. Expanding its range of services in India could help Amazon realize additional revenue.
We’ll keep an ear to the ground for some official details later in the year.